NABOKV-L post 0018024, Sun, 22 Mar 2009 21:32:02 -0300

[NABOKOV-L] Pale Fire Foils,
Fleurets and Flowerlets and Fleur De Fyler
After CKunin's come back, we return to otherwordly-fictional correspondences bt. New Wye and Zembla: séances with Countess Fleur and the Queen's spirit mentioning "flower/sodomy", poltergeists and flying dictionaries, old barns (pada...old wart...feur...), oral sex, defilements and deflowerings.

Excerpts (Pale Fire)

Shade: I'm ready to become a floweret/ Or a fat fly, but never, to forget.

CK: 1. The Countess[...] had him attend table-turning séances with an experienced American medium, séances at which the Queen's spirit, operating the same kind of planchette [...] wrote in English: "Charles take take cherish love flower flower flower."* An old psychiatrist so thoroughly bribed by the Countess as to look, even on the outside, like a putrid pear, assured him that his vices had subconsciously killed his mother and would continue "to kill her in him" if he did not renounce sodomy.
2. Where was Zembla the Fair? [...]? And my lovely flower boys..., and the whole marvelous tale?

*- Cf.The jumble of broken words ...I transcribe: pada ata lane pad not ogo old wart alan ther tale feur far rant lant tal told

Florete (Spanish); Foil (Egl.), Fleuret (Fench)

weight: 0,50 kg

length: 1,10 m

reach: ½
mainly employed in fencing practices; no cutting edges, from early XIXth C flexible sword tipped by a button.

1.a small flower.
2.Botany. one of the closely clustered small flowers that make up the flower head of a composite flower, as the daisy. of the tightly clustered divisions of a head of broccoli or cauliflower.
4.Also, florette / spun silk obtained from floss.
1350-1400; ME flouret < OF florete, dim. of flor flower; see -et Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2009.

A small or reduced flower, especially one of the grasses and composite plants, such as a daisy.
Any of the tight, branched clusters of flower buds that together form a head of cauliflower or broccoli.
[Middle English flouret, from Old French florete, diminutive of flor, flower; see flower.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2006 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Flo"ret\, n. [OF. florete, F. fleurette, dim. of OF. lor, F. fleur. See Flower, and cf. Floweret, 3d Ferret.]
1. (Bot.) A little flower; one of the numerous little flowers which compose the head or anthodium in such flowers as the daisy, thistle, and dandelion. --Gray.
2. [F. fleuret.] A foil; a blunt sword used in fencing. [Obs.] --Cotgrave.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.
Language Translation for : Floret
Spanish: florete, German: das Florett,

1583, from O.Fr. florete, dim. of flor "flower," from L. flora (q.v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2001 Douglas Harper

Search archive with Google:

Contact the Editors:,
Visit Zembla:
View Nabokv-L policies:
Visit "Nabokov Online Journal:"

Manage subscription options: